Off-road machinery emissions limits pass latest EU vote

Plans to update rules and tighten emissions limits on engines in lawnmowers, bulldozers, riverboats and other off-road machinery were backed by environment committee MEPs yesterday (April 26).

The plans will next be voted on at the plenary in July

The plans will next be voted on at the plenary in July

56 MEPs on the committee voted in favour of the plans, with three abstentions and none against.

According to the EU Parliament, Emissions from such non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) engines account for around 15% of all nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions and 5% of particulate matter emissions in the European Union.

Yesterday’s provisional agreement includes a new in-service engine performance monitoring system aimed at closing the current gap between laboratory emission test figures and those measured in the real world.

Harmonised

In addition, MEPs advocated having the EU Commission assess the possibility of laying down harmonised measures for retrofitting emission control devices to engines.

They also won a review clause, with a view to achieving further emission reductions.

“We tighten the limits proposed by the EU Commission even further for many power ranges, but we keep the approach reasonable enough so that the industry can comply within short time, which is the most important goal” – Italian MEP Elisabetta Gardini

The plans had already agreed between the European Parliament and the Dutch Presidency of the EU Council earlier this month (see AirQualityNews.com story) and will now be put to a vote by the full EU Parliament at the July plenary session in Strasbourg.

It is expected that new harmonised type-approval conditions for new engines installed in NRMM will start to apply gradually from 2018 up to 2020, depending on the category of the engine.

Italian MEP Elisabetta Gardini, who is leading on the plans, commented: “I believe we succeeded in striking the right balance here. We tighten the limits proposed by the EU Commission even further for many power ranges, but we keep the approach reasonable enough so that the industry can comply within short time, which is the most important goal.

“The agreement also allows some more time for the small and medium sized companies to cope with the new requirements. This is in line with the ‘Think Small First’ principle, which has guided EU institutional work for years.”